Monday, December 18, 2006

Question of the day

fru·gal [froo-guhl]
–adjective
1. economical in use or expenditure; prudently saving or sparing; not wasteful: a frugal manager.


gen·er·ous [jen-er-uhs]
–adjective
1. liberal in giving or sharing; unselfish: a generous patron of the arts; a generous gift.
2. free from meanness or smallness of mind or character; magnanimous.


Is it possible to be both?

(In my vision of an ideal world, the answer is a resounding YES.)

Please weigh in.

17 comments:

Mark said...

This is my first and last comment on your blog, because I have a life.
Are you kidding me? Who cares.

sarah said...

he means that in the kindest way.

Emily said...

I'm feeling the love, Mark! Spoken like a true cheapskate. (Just kidding.)

lys said...

TWO WORDS: Amy Adams

amye said...

Fun to see Mark commenting!
Yes, it's possible, although we tend to be either/or.

Neil and Diana. said...

Frugal of the wallet does not preclude one from being generous of the heart.

Emily said...

Alyssa, I thought of Amy, too, when I wrote this.

Mom, you are decidely in the latter category as one of the most generous people I know.

Diana, but what about generous of the wallet and frugal of the wallet?

sarah said...

One can be wallet-frugal with trivial, self-serving things and wallet-generous with important, philanthropic things.

Emily said...

What about these scenarios:

--Choose a less expensive restaurant, but tip 20%.

--Add a "charity fund" to the budget, and let it flow freely to other people until it's gone.

--When something free comes your way, do not try to turn it for a profit.

All of you above commenters are very good at all of this and I have benefited enormously from your generosity. I've just been frustrated lately by incidents of miserliness, and I'm turning to the Blog for a little free therapy session (because I'm frugal!)

abby said...

Emily, you're a good example of the combo. For example, paying off law school loans so quickly, but also finding it in your heart to send a few bucks to your sister who was living off of carrots and cracked wheat.

Emily said...

Abby, anyone who "can't afford apples" gets an automatic contribution towards the grocery cause.

Thanks for the compliment.

AmyJune said...

Very fascinating subject. As you know I try to be very frugal but I never want to be a cheapskate. For example, I always try to be very generous with tips. I clip coupons and buy food on sale to save money so I can invite families over for Sunday dinner. I buy fabric and ribbon really cheap downtown and then sew a lot of birthday/baby/christmas gifts. Thus cheap from the wallet but generous with the time it takes to create the presents.

Suzie Petunia said...

To be generous IN SPIRIT is very cheap, financially speaking. But I guess everyone has already covered this topic. The thing is... it is impossible to "fake it". I think we all thought of AmyJune right off! :)

sarah said...

for the record, I believe it is standard to tip 20% these days. Ask any waiter.

n said...

what if you're only getting the salad bar?

Emily said...

[sizzler]

sarah said...

20% if you enjoy the depression-era-targeted buffet and you are related to the waiter.